The life and times of Baltimore film maker and midnight movie pioneer, John Waters. Intercut with a 1972 interview of Waters are clips from his first films and recent interviews with his ... See full summary »
Notorious Baltimore criminal and underground figure Divine goes up against a sleazy married couple who make a passionate attempt to humiliate her and seize her tabloid-given title as "The Filthiest Person Alive".
A suburban housewife's world falls apart when her pornographer husband admits he's serially unfaithful to her, her daughter gets pregnant, and her son is suspected of being the foot-fetishist who's been breaking local women's feet.
A day in the lives of a hit-and-run driver and her victim, and the bizarre things that happen to them before and after they collide (sexual assault by a crazed foot-fetishist, visions of ... See full summary »
The Life and Times of the Filthiest Woman in the World
I'm not sure what I was expecting when I watched this movie. Being from Baltimore, I knew vaguely about John Water and Divine, and really almost nothing about drag queens, so I viewed I Am Divine as a complete outsider. This documentary could have gone wrong in so many ways, but I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was a sensitive and respectful documentary about a legendary figure.
As far as biographical documentaries go, I Am Divine was pretty standard, starting at the beginning of Divine/Glenn Milstead's life and concluding at its end. There usage of archival footage of Divine both in and out of costume was excellent, while the interviews of his close friends and family were very thorough. I found that the talking heads, rather than being too distracting, served to really painted a comprehensive picture of who Divine was. Though the documentary did touch on the issues that Divine faced throughout his life, such as his initial financial struggles, I would have liked to see the movie address them with more depth. However, on the other hand, I think that it's pretty understandable because I Am Divine was clearly meant to be a celebration of an influential figure's life.
I'm glad that I watched this movie. I learned quite a lot about someone who turned out to be enormously influential. Divine had huge hand in shaping current-day drag culture from the prim, debonair queens of the 50s-60s to the loud and colorful drag performers we are familiar with today. I would have loved to see them explore Divine's contemporary impact more in the movie, but alas. I Am Divine could have so easily veered into something that was offensive and mocking, but it stayed so respectful to Divine and who he was as a person. Watch this movie!!
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